A commentator, Ahmed Salami, points out the danger of sacking the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega, before the polls.
The most frightening and disturbing controversy since the build-up to the 2015 elections is the agitation for the removal of the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof Attahiru Jega, before the March 28 presidential poll.
The rumour was like a thunderbolt to stakeholders and international community, who had apprehension that Nigerians may end up in flame, if the polls are not handled in the most cautious way.
The politicians, particularly those from the All Progressives Congress and other concerned citizens, who saw Jega as the best Chief Electoral Officer ever, raged on the top of their voices that such step would spell doom for the country’s electoral process and create constitutional crisis in the polity.
Though, Nigerians took the news with disdain when it filtered into town. It was taken like one of those fiery tales that could be gotten anywhere during electioneering process in Nigeria.
It is no gainsaying the fact that politicians have turned the country into a huge rumour mill, where all sort of lies were being fabricated.
Former Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi buttressed this position while at the helms of affairs.
But, apprehension began to grow like a cancerous cell, when some notable members of the Peoples Democratic Party began to argue in favour of the sinister intention. Some was of the opinion that the body languages from these PDP handlers and opinion moulders could be what they discussed in the dark. People began to condemn the plot, even if it was not going to be true in the end.
The reason cited was the constitutional requirement surrounding Jega’s appointment. Some of the proponents of the removal like governor Ayodele Fayose and former Governor of Anambra State, Chief
Chukwuemeka Ezeife argued that no one is indispensable in a country like Nigeria, including Jega. They said his removal makes no news. Fayose even took a step further in his characteristic manner, saying ’’Heaven Will Not Fall If Jega is Removed”.
As much as I agree with the assertion that no one can claim absolutism of knowledge or perceived to be sole dependent upon by a country full of abundant human resources like Nigeria, but it is expedient for us to understand that some are better in certain positions than the others. Just like the coming of the Jesus Christ and Prophet Mohammed (Saw) Some vacancies could still be hard to fill.
Going by antecedents of the country in terms of woeful conducts of elections, Jega’s vacancy would be difficult to fill. We had had in the past when some Electoral Chiefs were behaving like card –carrying members of a political party. The rapport of the late FEDECO’s head, Chief Ovie Whiskey had with the National Party of Nigeria during the second Republic and the one between the PDP and Prof Maurice Iwu, were few examples in this regard.
Again, Jega could be taken as being indispensable as far as the conduct of the 2015 elections is concerned. We should not allow political expediency to becloud our reasoning to a certain fact that this man started the whole process four years ago. He has introduced smart card readers , Permanent Voter Cards and other laudable initiatives into electoral system.